On the eve of unleashing stable star Baaeed in the Lockinge, William Haggas has stated he has Addeybb in his best condition for 18 months as he gears up for his return from a life-threatening infection at Sandown.
Owned by Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum, Addeybb enjoyed a memorable start to 2021 when landing his second Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick in Sydney – his fourth Group 1 in total – but was forced to miss a return trip to Australia this year having contracted a life-threatening infection in his hock at the end of last year.
However, the eight-year-old rallied after treatment in Newmarket, meaning Haggas is eyeing the Brigadier Gerard Stakes on May 26 as a comeback destination prior to Addeybb running at Royal Ascot.
Asked about the wellbeing of Addeybb on the Racing Post’s What A Shout, Haggas said: “I don't think we've had him better for the last 18 months – he's in really good form.”
Which contest Addeybb runs in at Ascot will be determined by his performance at Sandown, with Haggas weighing up running in either the Group 1 Prince of Wales’s Stakes or the Listed Wolferton Stakes, which he won in 2019.
“He's going to run in the Brigadier Gerard. He'll probably run [if it is soft ground or not] as it's Sandown and they water pretty well there,” Haggas said on Friday. “I want to run him at Ascot, so if he wins he'll run in the Prince of Wales's Stakes and if he doesn't he'll run in the Wolferton again.”
Haggas also outlined plans to run the Queen’s Educator in the 1m2f three-year-old handicap at Epsom on Derby day, which forms part of the official celebration of the monarch’s Platinum Jubilee.
The Queen will not be represented in the Derby this year after likely candidate Reach For The Moon was forced to miss the Dante Stakes due to a setback, and Haggas, who saddled Shaamit to win the Derby in 1996, believes Desert Crown holds a strong chance of landing the Classic for trainer Sir Michael Stoute after his victory at York on Thursday.
“I thought [Desert Crown] was impressive,” Haggas said. “If he's got enough nous to go around Epsom I think he'll take a bit of beating.”